Attractions industry news

25 Feb 2014

London and the southeast dominate tourism spend in the UK

London and the southeast of England accounted for two-fifths of all annual tourism spending in the UK in 2011, according to recently released official figures.

The area accounted for an estimated £50bn out of £125bn spent on tourism during 2011, showing London’s dominance in the UK tourism market. In the capital alone, gross value supported by direct spend in tourism was £13bn - 27 per cent of the UK total.

The data, produced by the Office for National Statistics, also analysed the importance of tourism to the various regions around the UK as a proportion of their total economic activity. On this measure, tourism was most important to Wales, followed by Scotland and then the southwest of England, London and the northwest of England.

On a local level, Blackpool topped the list for reliance on tourism income, followed by Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Day trips by UK residents accounted for 43 per cent of spending, with 20 per cent from UK residents staying away from home for at least one night, 17 per cent from overseas residents visiting the UK and the remainder by UK residents preparing to travel overseas.

The data will now be used by local economic development bodies and tourism agencies to identify each region’s strengths, weaknesses and tourism potential.

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